Behind the Music
Colorado’s rock-star photographer, Lisa Siciliano, stays true to her old-school ways.
Lisa Siciliano was starstruck: Last year, behind the Ogden Theatre after a show, she shared an alley with legendary Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash. “I was too afraid to talk to him,” Siciliano says, “so I hid behind two other photographers and stuck out my portfolio book for him to sign.”
“Timid” is not an adjective commonly attached to rock ’n’ roll photographers, but everything seems to have worked out for the Boulder-based Siciliano: Hanging backstage with her camera is just part of the gig. Through her company, Dog Daze Photo, Siciliano has spent the last 10 years capturing gritty black-and-white shots of music greats including Stevie Wonder, Metallica, Erykah Badu, Kid Rock, B.B. King, and Willie Nelson when they pass through Colorado. And Siciliano, flouting convention, still shoots her subjects with film, typically in just 36 frames. “There’s just something about black-and-white film that gets the action like digital can’t,” she says. “There’s texture to it.”
Sometimes, when musicians return to Red Rocks and see themselves immortalized in Siciliano’s photos on the venue’s walls, they ask to take the portraits home. This winter, you can catch her in her signature pigtails and boots with her Nikon F5 at venues such as the Pepsi Center, Fillmore Auditorium, Ogden Theater, and Oriental Theatre. “Musicians love to play Denver,” she says. “They just seem more relaxed. Any night of the week, any time of the year, you can go out and see somebody great here.”